A recent exhibit at The Arts Fund in Santa Barbara introduced us to the textile "wall paintings" of Penny Mast McCall.
"Music of the Spheres," by Penny Mast McCall; all photos by Wayne McCall
A collage artist and jeweler, Penny took up the traditional craft of hooking rugs with a group of women in 2001, using wool from recycled clothes she found in thrift stores. "I started out using plaid Pendleton shirts," she says, which gave her nice mottled colors to work with. An avid recyclist, she adds, "I also like using plaid stadium blankets; they give a piece nice body. I have also used other materials, such as silver spandex, in one of my favorite rugs" – a representation of a TV dinner.
The current series is abstract, however. "I really liked the small 14-by-14 format. They went fairly fast, and I didn't get sick of a particular color palette, since I was changing with each work."
Penny says she enjoys the entire process, from working out the initial original design, to cutting the fabric with somehing she likens to a pizza cutter, to hooking the strips into a monkscloth backing.
Penny Mast McCall at The Arts Fund.
If you're in or near Santa Barbara, the exhibit, Double Trouble Redux, will be up through February 23.